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If you are thinking about automating certain communications with your customers over WhatsApp, you are in the right place! Here, we talk about what a WhatsApp chatbot is, its advantages, what you can use it for, and how to create one.
What’s a WhatsApp Chatbot?
You might have seen bots on many websites you have visited. They appear at the corner of the page with a message like “Hi there, how can I help you?”
Once you click on it, it could provide you with a list of questions to choose from, or you can type your own.
The bot either gives you an answer or shows you an article from the business’s website. It might ask you further questions to provide you with a direct response. If the bot cannot answer your question, it refers you to a human agent.
A WhatsApp chatbot offers you all of that experience and more over WhatsApp, without human intervention. As a result, your customers can have their questions answered and be guided in the right direction, without taking up any time from your team.
How does a WhatsApp chatbot work?
There are two ways for a business to get started with a WhatsApp chatbot:
- You need to be a computer programmer to create one from scratch or
- Use the WhatsApp chatbot of an easy-to-use bot builder like Rasayel, and customize it for your business needs.
Either way, a WhatsApp chatbot uses artificial intelligence or pre-programmed rules to identify specific keywords in your customer’s message and answer them accordingly.
In the example “Do you ship internationally?”, a bot recognizes the keywords “ship” and “internationally” and provides a relevant answer, for example, “Yes, we do ship internationally. Extra shipping charges apply depending on your country.”
A WhatsApp bot could have a more complex conversation that involves following up on a response with another question. For example, Uber in India uses WhatsApp’s different message types, such as reply buttons and list messages, to simplify booking an Uber ride. Customers only need to send a “Hello” to Uber’s WhatsApp number. The bot then asks them to choose their preferred language to continue the conversation. After they select it, it asks for their pickup location, and after the riders reply, the bot asks for their destination. The back-and-forth communication continues until an Uber driver is booked and is on their way.
You can program your bot to be triggered by a customer message and respond, like in the Uber example. You could also program it to initiate a conversation, for example, when you want to run a marketing campaign.
What are the benefits of a WhatsApp chatbot?
Chatbots open many opportunities and benefits for businesses and their customers. The quality and design of the chatbot make a big difference in how effective it is for your business and how satisfied your customers will be. A poorly designed WhatsApp chatbot can frustrate customers and hurt your revenue. A well-designed one could make a substantial positive impact.
A WhatsApp chatbot boosts your business’s efficiency
Many customer communications entail repetitive tasks. For example, order cancellation, order confirmation, payment, and new product announcements require standardized steps you can leave to a bot. This way, your agents save time for more complicated tasks requiring human interaction.
Here’s an example:
Let’s say that every time someone views your website, you want to see if they qualify for a customer and help them make a purchase based on their needs. You can automate a bot to do this for you.
After the lead answers a few questions, the bot could give them a list of products and services or ask an agent to talk to the customer.
A WhatsApp chatbot increases your sales
Imagine if you could sell your products to your customers on their favorite messaging app. Well, it is possible!
You can design your chatbot according to your customer journey and for different customer segments. A customer might message and ask for a product, for example, “Hi, do you have a green pullover?”. Your bot could reply with a single product message and show them the product and its price. It could assist them until the final step of placing their order and making a payment without human intervention.
If you’d like to learn about WhatsApp’s various message types, including single- and multi-product messages, please read One-Stop Guide for Interactive Messages.
Customers get their questions answered 24/7 on WhatsApp
A small business can make-do with using auto-replies like “Thanks for your message. We will respond shortly.” to customers’ first messages. If they contacted you out of your working hours, you might use “away messages” to let them know you’re not available.
Customers expect quick answers, regardless of when they contact you. A study by HubSpot found that close to 90% of consumers expect a 10-minute response time to their queries.
With a WhatsApp chatbot, it doesn’t matter what time, on which day, or at which time zone your customers message you.
A WhatsApp chatbot reduces your WhatsApp conversation cost
If you want to set up a WhatsApp chatbot, you need three things that have their own costs:
WhatsApp Business API/WhatsApp Cloud API
A Shared WhatsApp Inbox like Rasayel
WhatsApp’s conversation-based cost
A WhatApp conversation is a 24-hour window of time from when your first message to a customer is delivered. All the messages you exchange with your customer, including messages sent by your WhatsApp bot, are associated with that conversation and incur only one charge. Therefore, it’s more cost-effective for you to resolve the customer’s issue as quickly as possible, and a chatbot could help you achieve that.
For more information, please visit:
- Rasayel’s ultimate guide to WhatsApp Business Platform/API pricing
- Meta’s official WhatsApp conversation-based pricing page
Customers have a smooth experience, and agents save time
According to a Statista study, one of the most frustrating things for customers is when they contact a business to explain an issue, and later have to repeat all they’ve said. With a WhatsApp bot like Rasayel’s, all of the information that the bot collects is stored in the chat, and all of the customer support agents have the same context.
By having the bot take those questions first, the agent can free up their time to focus on more important things, such as resolving an issue or helping the customer achieve what they want.
What are the use cases of a WhatsApp chatbot?
A WhatsApp bot can help various business verticals in customer support, sales, and marketing. Almost any business process that has a standardized set of steps can be automated by a WhatsApp bot.
Qualify your leads with a WhatsApp chatbot
Businesses need to know if a potential customer meets certain qualifications before they offer their service. Think of a fintech company that provides loans, or a law firm that helps entrepreneurs register a business. Such businesses can create a bot that asks a set of questions, and if they are qualified, an agent could reach out to them.
Automate your sales with a WhatsApp chatbot
With WhatsApp’s list messages, single-product and multi-product messages, eCommerce businesses can make it easy for customers to select a service/product and purchase it.
You can run marketing campaigns with a bot and have it guide the customers through the pipeline until they make a purchase.
Update customers on their order’s shipping status
It is helpful and courteous if you inform a customer when their order is dispatched, when the shipping is delayed, and when the order has reached its destination. Each of these events can trigger a bot to update the customer.
Let customers cancel their orders
Order cancellation should not be that difficult. If a customer wants to cancel an order, they should be able to send a message regarding this, and a bot could assist them and confirm the cancellation in a matter of minutes.
Common questions about products, working hours, or prices can be handled by a bot. It could give a direct answer or lead your customers to the relevant page on your website.
Collect customer feedback and reviews
Once customers receive their order, you can trigger a bot to ask them for their feedback. The bot could then guide happy customers to your website to leave a review. If the customers are not satisfied, it could ask them further questions so that you can improve your products and services.
How do I get a WhatsApp chatbot?
Whether you choose to create a WhatsApp chatbot from scratch or use a chatbot builder like Rasayel, you must have some pre-requisites:
- A Facebook Business account
- A phone number that meets Meta’s criteria
- Access to the WhatsApp Business API or WhatsApp Cloud API
- A team inbox or messaging platform to send and receive messages
Neither of the WhatsApp APIs has an interface/inbox to send and receive messages. Therefore, a business must purchase an inbox or a CRM for customer communications. Rasayel is a WhatsApp inbox that lets you communicate with your customers over WhatsApp as a team. It offers many features such as bulk messaging, reports on the number of messages sent and received, resolution time, and … you guessed it, a chatbot ;)
If you want to use Rasayel as your WhatsApp inbox and use its chatbot, you can use either of our Premium or Enterprise plans:
Premium Plan ($200 per month)
It’s suitable for high-volume teams with complex workflows and has the following features:
- For up to 10 team members
- $20 per additional member
- You can connect up to 50 channels (either multiple WhatsApp channels or Instagram, Facebook, Telegram and more)
- Unlimited contacts
- Unlimited messages
- Importing contacts
- Have it in your browser or as a mobile app for android and ios devices
- Assignments rules
- Custom views
- Auto notifications
- Ability to integrate with Shopify, HubSpot and Zapier
- Priority support via email or chat
- Onboarding support
Enterprise Plan (Custom Pricing)
This is the option for teams that need a custom tailored plan. They receive all of the functionalities of the premium plan. It has the same features as the premium plan, including bots, plus the following:
- It can be customized for the number of team members you have.
- You can connect unlimited channels.
- We provide training.
If your business is growing and WhatsApp is one of your primary channels of communication, you can automate many tasks with a WhatsApp chatbot. Repetitive communications and tasks like order confirmations, order cancellations, running a marketing campaign and guiding customers through the sales process, and many more can be done by chatbots. You can leave only the work that requires a human to your team.
With a chatbot, customers can be attended to at any time of the day, and you’ll never miss out on a sale.
If you’d like to learn more about how WhatsApp can help you grow your business, please reach out to us on WhatsApp at: +13024070488
We also offer a free consultation session where we go through your use case, answer any questions you have about WhatsApp, and help you build a strategy to make the best out of the platform. Book a call with us here. We’d love to speak with you: